First Week of October 1871-2001
140 Years Ago (1871): The tobacco crop in that vicinity is likely to prove quite remunerative to the
growers, although considerable expense was necessarily incurred for the erection of sheds, &c., which
will not have to be sustained by the growers another season. The undertaking was more experimental
than any definite ideas of successful result; but the experiment has demonstrated the fact that tobacco
can be made a successful crop, and if prices continue favorable, a large extent will be cultivated
another season. The subject of planting, cultivating, curing, &c., will be closely studied, with a view to
better results. The frost holding off gave nearly everyone an opportunity to secure his crop in fine
130 Years Ago (1881): The Y.M.C.A. met Monday evening over the drug store and matured their
organization by electing the following officers: A. S. Baker, president; W. S. Smith, vice president; C.
Webber, sec’y and A. C. Gray, treasurer. The bylaws were read and several persons sent in their
names for membership. Membership fee was placed at $1 payable in quarterly installments, in
advance. The fee for non-acting members was fixed at 25 cents, paid at time of joining. For full
membership, church membership is a necessary qualification. Other persons of good character are
admitted as non-active members.
120 Years Ago (1891): Mrs. Mary Wiggins informs us this morning that her father-in-law, Mr. A. C.
Wiggins, residing in the town of Center, died on Monday Oct. 5, ’91 at the ripe old age of over one
hundred years. He is well known in this place and throughout this entire country for his remarkable
vitality, having looked after the building of a handsome residence in this city about six years ago and
doing a great deal of the work himself. He has been an ardent church member the most of his life and
was a great walker up to the time of his last sickness, frequently walking from his home to this place
when he was ninety-six years of age, a distance of at least fourteen miles.
110 Years Ago (1901): Mr. and Mrs. Geo. Noyes, of the bakery, were made happy on Saturday, Sept.
28, by the safe arrival of a nice boy.
100 Years Ago (1911): The Good Times club went to the Lou Fellows country home Friday evening
and assisted Mr. and Mrs. Fellows in celebrating their 25th wedding anniversary. Refreshments were
served and the occasion was one of social pleasure and profit to all.
90 Years Ago (1921): The class of physics at the high school which near the close of the term last
year started to build a wireless station has finished it by making the aerial twenty feet higher from the
flagstaff of the high school building and adding other apparatus. They now can hear telephone
conversation from Madison and the Great Lakes. As soon as they can obtain the proper receiver for
such work the class expects to get the wireless market reports sent out from Madison for the benefit of
the dealers of this city and the farmers as well.
80 Years Ago (1931): Miss Hazel Murphy was re-elected president and secretary at a meeting of the
teachers of Union township held on Tuesday of last week in the Brown rural school. Mrs. Ina Bly was
appointed to represent the township in conferring with the county committee regarding plans for the
rural commencement program.
70 Years Ago (1941): Mr. and Mrs. C. W. Hazlett have purchased the Holmes Grocery store at 15
East Main street and took possession Monday. They will continue to operate the business at the
same location, with Mrs. Hazlett in charge of the store. Mr. Hazlett plans to continue as a traveling
salesman. Mr. and Mrs. Grover Holmes came to Evansville in 1927 and were employed here for ten
years by the Kroger company. They later operated a store on South Madison street for a few months
before moving to the location on East Main Street.
60 Years Ago (1951): The Fiddoodlers Square Dance club members will assemble in Everill’s Roller
rink tonight for another good time. Dancing will continue from 8:30 until 11:30 with Herb Johson of
Madison calling and the Cactus Twisters, also of Madison providing the music. The hostess committee
is comprised of Jeanette Montgomery, Mr. and Mrs. Roger Thompson and Mr. and Mrs. Roger Clark.
50 Years Ago (1961): The football team voted to select the senior boys they wanted to have
represent them on the homecoming court. Jim Ganoung was elected king. He chose his queen. The
boys on the court are Everett Propst, Don Thornton, Tom Cain and Bill Heritage. These boys select
the girl they would like to accompany them on the court. “Falling Leaves” has been chosen as the
theme of the dance.
40 Years Ago (1971): Miss Bonnie LuAnne Zweifel and Larry L. Luchsinger were married at 1:30
Saturday, Oct. 2, in the United Methodist Church in Evansville. Parents of the couple are Mr. and Mrs.
Alvin H. Zweifel, Evansville and Mr. and Mrs. Wilbur A. Luchsinger. Rev. I. Dean Jordan officiated.
Maid of honor was Miss Betty Zweifel, sister of the bride. The bridesmaids were Miss Val Oscarson,
Ilene Pickett and Shirley Olson. The best man was Mike Losey and groomsmen were Jim Schiffner,
Lowell Crocker and the groom’s brother, John Luchsinger. Mrs. Angela Wyse was the organist and
soloist was Nancy Thompson.
30 Years Ago (1981): Mayor Robert M. Olsen opened the Evansville Connection from the newly
constructed Hwy. 14 into Evansville of Wednesday at 9 a.m. stating the construction “opens up a new
panorama of the city never seen before.” Olsen was referring to the sweeping view of the city and the
row of houses and sidewalk now visible, which previously had been hidden from view by the 50-year-
old viaduct which was removed this year. The deteriorated condition of the viaduct called for its
removal or considerable expenditures in the next two years. The bridge was owned by the state.
20 Years Ago (1991): On Sept. 20th, representatives of the Evansville Golf Association broke ground
for the addition of a new nine holes. President of the Evansville Golf Association, Vince Maloney,
states the board has been working on expansion plans for the past year. The plan calls for a total
integration of the old course with the new nine. Maloney states that the course, when finished, will be
a completely new 18-hole complex. The firm of Gilmore/Graves from Spring Green, WI/Phoenix, AZ,
designed the layout and will supervise construction. Weather permitting the new course will be open
for limited play in late fall of 1992 and full play in the spring or summer of 1993. The golf Association
board is Milt Hoesley, Vince Maloney, Tom Allen, John Whitmore, Barb Krumwiede, Ed Larson, Dale
Ross, Rich Templeton and Jeff Farnsworth.
10 years ago (2001): Evansville Lake Leota was measured, graphed, probed, boated upon and
appreciated for her beauty by complete strangers to her shores this past week. Five graduate
students from the University of Platteville arrived with the appropriate equipment to perform the much
needed hydrographic survey. The men camped out on the shores of the lake starting last Thursday
and stayed through Saturday. Sediment samples were taken to the State Lab for testing, primarily for
heavy metals. Most of the time spent on the Lakes was in obtaining elevations and coordinates.
Second Week of October 1871-2001
140 Years Ago (1871): Married at the American House in Edgerton, September 27, by the Rev. S.
Lugg, Mr. Frank A. Montgomery to Miss Mary O’Brien, both of Porter, Rock County, Wis.
130 Years Ago (1881): Names of the pupils in the First Primary Department who have been neither
absent nor tardy during the month ending October 1st, 1881: Jessie Allen, Lyman Allen, Lola Blood,
Clarence Baker, Frank Clark, Gertie Eager, Julia Everson, George Eggleston, Jessie Francisco,
Bertha Koeller, Rosa Koeller, Hattie Learned, Almond Libby, Alice Libby, Theodora Morgan, Ida
Mueller, Willis Stearns, Blanch Springer. Greita Finch, Teacher.
120 Years Ago (1891): Matthew Bradley, of Porter, is under a physician's care for injuries received
from one of his neighbors, who threw a stone at Mr. Bradley's dog. Being of unsteady- nerve he
missed the dog but struck Mr. Bradley on the forehead, inflicting a scalp wound and seriously injuring
110 Years Ago (1901): M. J. Fisher’s addition on Longfield St. is being improved by houses being
built by Byron Babbitt, George Dell and Henry Wilcox.
100 Years Ago (1911): H. W. Hamilton of this city claims the unique distinction of being the fourth man
to enlist in the state of Wisconsin in response to President Lincoln’s call for 75,000 volunteers to put
down the rebellion. In April, 1861, Mr. Hamilton was living in Baraboo, but the week previous to his
enlistment had been working in Rockton, Ill., a few miles from Beloit. The evening of the day that the
telegraph announced the exciting news that the President had called for volunteers, Mr. Hamilton, a
mere youth, instantly formed his war-like resolution, and the following morning at an early hour was
standing before the little semi-military office in Beloit, where Mr. Thomas Northrup took the names of
the applicants in the order in which they came. William Stone and James Quinn of Beloit, and Philip
Morse of Newark, Ill. had preceded Mr. Hamilton by a few minutes. Mr. Northrup above referred to
afterwards become First Lieutenant Co. F. 1st Wisconsin three months volunteers. Mr. Hamilton
believes himself to be the last one of the group now living.
90 Years Ago (1921): The Senior class of 1922, of the Evansville High School will have the honor of
getting out the first High School Annual ever gotten out by the school of this city. The staff of the
magazine will be as follows: Editor and chief, Miss Alice Colony; assistant editor, Miss Mary Croak;
advertising manager, Delevan Calkins; business manager, Layton Carson. The name of the
publication will be kept secret until the magazine appears, next June.
80 Years Ago (1931): Evansville’s new sewage disposal plant is in operation. With the completion of
the work, Evansville now has one of the finest and most modern sewage disposal plants in the state
for a city of its size. The city has been in need of a new plant for a long time and has been urged by
the state board of health to install a new sewage system.
70 Years Ago (1941): A group of women in the district of the Forest Academy school which has
recently been opened following several years during which time the schoolhouse was closed, met
recently and formed a club. The Forest Academy club will be headed by Mrs. Lawrence Julseth as
president. Other officers elected were Mrs. Charles Gabler, vice president; Mrs. Earl Van Wart,
secretary, and Mrs. Ben Heffel, treasurer. The group made plans to serve refreshments at the
Halloween program to be sponsored by the teacher, Miss Blanche Hunter and the pupils.
60 Years Ago (1951): A suggestion for acquiring financial aid for the recreational youth center was
made by Francis Cook. He suggested investigating the possibility of obtaining funds set aside for the
swimming pool for the center. A report on this suggestion finds that some organizations are interested
in withdrawing their contributions due to no concrete action on the swimming pool. A list of the
contributors will be obtained and the committee will send a letter inquiring whether the contributor
would desire to turn over their portion to the recreation center.
50 Years Ago (1961): The first check under the new Freeman Feed Grain Program was issued to
Stanley Peterson, local farmer in Center township, who restricted his corn acreages in accordance
with the new program. The presentation ceremony at Green Bros. in Evansville brought state and
county officials into town. The group viewed the warehouse where the corn will be stored. Ben Green
received the grain for government storage. Green commented that Stanley Peterson received 20
cents over the market price for his crop under the new feed grain program. The program is designed
to reduce the nation’s corn crop by reducing the acreage planted.
40 Years Ago (1971): Mrs. Madge L. Allen, 78, a resident here most of her life, died Monday in
Evansville Nursing Home after a long illness. The former Madge Tomlin was born here Jan. 26, 1893,
and was a graduate of Evansville High School and Janesville Business College. She was an
accountant for 38 years with the state Department of Budget and Accounts, retiring in 1959. She
married Fred C. Allen in 1930. He died in 1932. Surviving are a sister, Mrs. Ida Conroy, mayor of
Evansville; a stepson, Malcolm B. Allen; two nieces, Mrs. Patricia Allen, Evansville and Mrs. Barbara
Tallman, Plymouth, Mich. Services will be at 1:30 p.m. Wednesday in the Allen funeral Home with
burial in Maple Hill Cemetery.
30 Years Ago (1981): Ronald Grovesteen, a 1970 graduate of Milton College and currently driver
education instructor and head football coach for Evansville High School was inducted into the Milton
College Alumni Association Athletic Hall of Fame during halftime ceremonies at the college’s 58th
annual Homecoming game Saturday, October 10. Grovesteen was one of the premier athletes in the
college’s history. He was a four-year starter on the three men’s sports that Milton College sponsored,
football, basketball, and baseball. He was a letter winner in each sport for a total of 12 letters.
20 Years Ago (1991): FFA members Kelly Crull, Randy Delzer, Pete Haakenson and Stacy Crull
competed in the World Dairy Expo Dairy Cattle judging contest at Madison. Members were
accompanied and coached by FFA Advisor Gary Burkhalter. The team earned an excellent rating by
finishing 23rd against 120 teams in the Midwest. Individually, Pete Haakenson ranked 18th out of 350
10 years ago (2001): Greg and Cathy Arnold have invited the Methodist Church congregation to their
annual Halloween Party at their home. There will be games, bobbing for apples, rides on the hay
wagons. Fun for the whole family.
Third Week of October 1871-2001
140 Years Ago (1871): A meeting in the interests of the tobacco growers of Union and the towns
adjacent, was held on Thursday evening in Evansville, and was largely attended. An idea seemed to
prevail to the effect that growers should be more conversant with the value of their crops, and the
proper time to sell, to realize the highest value. Some pretty strong language was used touching the
motives and conduct of certain buyers and "middle" men, in their efforts to misrepresent the value and
extent of the Wisconsin crop. A permanent organization was effected, and meetings will be held once
in two weeks.
130 Years Ago (1881): William Wood has bought an 80-acre farm of Leander Patterson. The price
paid was $1,600. Mr. Wood does not go on to it till spring.
120 Years Ago (1891): Cooksville: The Norwegians are talking of building a church here. Ground
has been offered, we hear by two different ones, and a committee will soon be around for
subscriptions to the cause.
110 Years Ago (1901): A petition is being circulated and very liberally signed by the tax payers and
leading businessmen of our city for the city to purchase Lake Leota with sufficient adjoining property
to preserve it in a healthful and useful condition, as far as beauty and pleasure is concerned at least,
which is no doubt a very worthy object that will meet with the approval of all in a sanitary point of view,
if no other, and it can be purchased now at reasonable cost.
100 Years Ago (1911): The Baker Manufacturing company will ship a car load of windmills and towers
to Freemantle, Australia, Oct. 25.
90 Years Ago (1921): The members of the Rock County Acre Corn Club, which is composed of boys
and girls whose homes are in this county and who have each raised an acre of corn in competition for
prizes amounting to $30 will in the next week or so place samples of their corn on exhibition at the
Bank of Evansville. Members of the club from this part of the county are: Lynn Jones, Charles Maas,
Earl Schwarz, Ellen Rasmussen, Gilmore Hagen, Raymond Schwartz, Harlan Kuelz, Edward Keopke,
Percy Danks, Edward Barrett, Clarence and Ole Listol, Allen Julseth, Herbert Miller, Olav Lunde, Clara
Frie and Ralph Blunt.
80 Years Ago (1931): With the exception of 50 hand rail posts still to be poured and the installation of
part of the ornamental lighting system, construction work on the new viaduct over the Northwestern
tracks here is practically completed. Twelve of the 23 ornamental lights have been completely
installed and seven more are partly completed, according to Lester H. Bullard, electrician. Tentative
plans are underway to open the bridge for travel November 11, Armistice Day, with a special program
sometime during that week in celebration of the event.
70 Years Ago (1941): Miss Lois Quesenberry, Elkhorn, daughter of Mrs. E. J. Quesenberry, Brainerd,
Minnesota, became the bride of Michael Finnane, Racine, son of Mr. and Mrs. D. F. Finnane Sr.,
Evansville, at 8 a.m. Saturday. The ceremony was performed by the Ref. F. J. Mehigan, who read the
nuptial mass in St. Paul’s Catholic church which was decorated in autumn colors for the occasion. The
groom was attended by his brother, James Finnane, Thomas Hampel, this city, and James Conway,
Janesville, brothers-in-law of the groom, were the ushers. Jack, Tom and Richard Meredith and James
Finnane, Jr., nephews of the groom, were acolytes. The choir sang “St. Loretta’s High Mass”
accompanied by Virginia Hartl. The ceremony was followed by a wedding breakfast served at the
home of the groom’s parents, one mile north of the city.
60 Years Ago (1951): Rodney J. Leeder and Walter W. Klemp left Tuesday at 6:30 a.m. from Beloit
with other Rock County men for the armed forces induction center in Milwaukee. Robert Apfel and
Irvin Parsons, who had taken their physical examinations several weeks ago, left Tuesday for induction.
50 Years Ago (1961): The complexities of high school building design occupied the Board of
Education at its regular monthly meeting. Waterman-Fuge and Associates, architects of Fort
Atkinson, have been retained by the school board to design the building. After the preliminary plans
have been completed the board will hold a bond referendum perhaps during December so that
construction can start as early as possible in the spring.
40 Years Ago (1971): Miss Jeanette Kae McNamer, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Donald E. McNamer,
Evansville became the bride of James Edward Jones, son of Mrs. Florentine Jones, Evansville at 1 p.
m. Saturday, Oct. 16. The Rev. Joseph Brechtl read the services in St. Paul’s Catholic Church in
Evansville. Honor attendants were Miss Patricia Smalley and Miss Diane Faldet. Mmes, Fred Winger,
Donald Janecek and Donald Maas were the aides. Serving as best man for Mr. Jones was Richard
Humberg. Groomsmen were James Popanz, James Eaton, Keith Benash and John Lindemann.
Ushering were Donald McNamer, Steven Kimberley, William Byrns and Robert Brennan.
30 Years Ago (1981): At the Tuesday night council meeting, last week, Roy Eckrose of Donohue &
Associates, and Evansville city engineer informed the council members of the costs of the proposed
Waste Water Treatment Plant. Construction bids amount to $1,520,748. Project construction costs,
however, will add some $400,000, creating a total cost of $1,939,583. The state grant of $952,226 will
drop the figure to $987,357, which is the Evansville share of the cost. Included in the project
construction costs are $119,000 for engineering, which covers contract administration, operation and
maintenance manuals, start-up service and operator training.
20 Years Ago (1991): The Evansville School Board passed a $6,591,616 budget at the meeting
Monday night. This represents an increase of 4.9 percent over the 1990-91 budget. The proposed
tax levy of $2,857,255 yields a district-wide mil rate of $16.45/$1,000 of equalized valuation of .05 over
last year’s mill rate. This means an owner of a $70,000 home in the Evansville school district will pay
$3.50 in additional school taxes for 1991-92. As provided in Governor Thompson’s budget, the
property tax exemption would save local taxpayers $134.00 of school tax. The net property tax bill for
school aid will decrease in the Evansville school district by more than $130 per family, according to Dr.
10 years ago (2001): The girls cross country team made history on Saturday at the Coachman’s Inn.
They placed 2nd among 18 schools to qualify for the state meet at Wisconsin Rapids on Saturday.
This was the first girls’ team in the history of girl sports at Evansville High School to qualify for a state
meet. The historic team places were Freshman Amanda McElroy 5th; Senior Thea Heimerl 12th;
Freshman Morgan Rucks 18th; Junior Renee Sarow 20th’; Senior Casney Heacox 30th; Junior Megan
O’Brien 37th; and Junior Nichole Crans 44th. There are only 14 schools in Division II that qualify for
the state meet.
Fourth Week of October 1871-2001
140 Years Ago (1871): The Baptist church has just lifted a debt of six hundred dollars.
130 Years Ago (1881): Elmer Bullard delivered his “Banker” team at Janesville Saturday. He sold it
during the Fair to Mr. Kickly for Marshall Field & Co., of Chicago, for $400, $25 more were added for
extra keeping, since the Fair, as they did not wish to take the team to Chicago during the horse
epidemic in that city. He also sold a two-year-old French horse that weighed 1,200 pounds to Mr.
Shiveley, Saturday for $125. Mr. Bullard thinks it is better to raise good horses than poor ones.
120 Years Ago (1891): County Treasurer A. D. Burdick has apportioned the $14,582.77 state school
money to the several towns, villages and cities in Rock County as the law directs, being on a basis of
$1.024 for each enrolled scholar. Union township received $291.84 and the village of Evansville,
110 Years Ago (1901): L. Ball purchased Guy Barnard’s old house on the Madison road and moved it
to his lot on Mill St. Mr. Ball expects soon to occupy it.
100 Years Ago (1911): Fisher & Gillies have sold the 200-acre farm lately owned by Robert E. Horne
to John H. Hagen. This place was once known as the Richard Winston farm and has always been
known as a good one.
90 Years Ago (1921): The famous old regiment, the Third Infantry, the organization of which dates
back to the time of George Washington, who signed the original order creating it, camped in this city
Wednesday evening. The regiment as it camped here last evening comprised 200 enlisted men and
twenty officers, and had for traveling equipment forty-seven horses, 113 mules and thirty transport
wagons and was in command of Major F. M. Brannan and Adjutant A. G. Wing. Their hike of 925 miles
from Fort Sherman, Ohio, to Fort Snelling, Minnesota, is an experiment on the part of the government
to ascertain whether marching troops long distances is cheaper than transporting them by rail. An
accurate map is kept of the line of march, every turn, farm house and cultivated field being charted
and every distance measured.
80 Years Ago (1931): Two large barns, a granary and a double corn crib were completely destroyed
when fire broke out at the J. C. Robinson farm 3 miles northwest of the city. The blaze was started by
a spark from a corn husking machine. The city fire department was immediately summoned and
worked for hours battling the flames and attempting to save the other buildings. The buildings were
completely filled with grain, barley, corn and hay for winter use, all of which was consumed in the
blaze. The loss is estimated at several thousand dollars.
70 Years Ago (1941): Friday and Sunday will mark the climax of a series of special meetings planned
to commemorate the golden jubilee and the founding of the Lutheran Church in Cooksville. The
congregation and friends will banquet on Friday. The program will include music by the parish male
chorus, the Hans Haakenson family, and solos. The Reverend Edwin Hegge, D.D., of Oak Park,
Illinois, will be the guest speaker. Dr. Hegge is a son of the late Reverend M. H. Hegge, who served
the Cooksville congregation for a period of thirty-three years. Festivities on Sunday will open with a
Norwegian service at 9:30 and an English language service at 11 o’clock. The committee in charge of
the festivities consists of: Messrs. Jens Norum, Hans Haakenson, Oscar Kjernes, Harvey Brunsell,
Gilbert Odegaard, and Thorfinn Olson. The anniversary book, one of the features of the program,
tells us that the congregation was organized in 1891 under the leadership of the Reverend Theodor
Dahl. Pastor Hegge accepted the call to this congregation in 1903 and remained in charge until the
Reverend Theodore Heimarck took over in 1936.
60 Years Ago (1951): Harry E. Roderick is announcing that he sold his funeral home to Alfred Ward,
who has been associated with him since May 1, when Harry Roderick, Jr. returned to service. Mr. and
Mrs. Ward have resided in the apartment at the funeral home since their marriage on June 16 of this
year. Mrs. Ward is also registered with the State board of Health and will assist in the management
and operation of the funeral home.
50 Years Ago (1961): Local businessmen bought the animals exhibited by local 4-H boys at the Junior
Livestock Show in Madison. Charlie Maas, acting as agent for two implement companies, Art
Baumgarten and Harold Hull purchased the animals shown by
Terry and Paul George, Joe Bradley and Tom Hatlen.
40 Years Ago (1971): A barn 36 x 84 feet and a 12 x 50 ft. silo were completely destroyed by fire late
Friday afternoon on the farm of Mr. and Mrs. Alvin Francis west of the city. The Evansville firemen
were called at 4:20 p.m. and remained at the farm until 11 a.m. Saturday. The Brooklyn Fire Co. was
also called and responded with two trucks, one of which hauled water for several hours. The Hoerler
Milk truck also assisted by hauling water from Evansville to the fire and the Orfordville and Footville
companies offered their services and were requested to stand by to help at the fire or to answer any
other calls that might come in. The Janesville Company was also standing by.
30 Years Ago (1981): Al Ward of Evansville has purchased the only building on the National Register
of Historic Places in Edgerton. He has purchased the Culton House which is the Nygaard Funeral
Home. Annie and Lu Nygaard are retiring. It is a 16-room, four bath home of elegant Queen Anne
style with a ballroom. The home was converted to a funeral home in 1947, and the business was
purchased by the Nygaards in 1973. At one time there was a tennis court in the back yard.
20 Years Ago (1991): The Evansville Fire Department was called to a car fire on Wednesday of last
week. According to Fire Chief Edd McCaffrey, the driver had parked on a pile of leaves and the car,
which had been driven from Janesville, had enough heat built up to ignite the pile of leaves. The Fire
chief cautions all drivers at this time of the year especially to be careful of driving atop a pile of leaves,
as they can very easily ignite.
10 years ago (2001): The 6th grade science class is studying the effects of pollution on our
environment. As part of their science assignment Kala Nelson, Kim Fischer, Brittany VanGalder and
Eppi Saul had a fund raiser for Lake Leota. They read about all the pollution and bacteria in the lake
and how it is harming the environment in Evansville. They sponsored a bake sale and raised $60
which they proudly donated to the Lake Leota SOLE fund.